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Solar parabolic troughs to run my whole house: physics gurus needed!

 
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Guys, I need help in the PHYSICS bit. I'd love to hear your suggestions, but please help me in the calculations I ask for below!

I watched the graphite burn away in seconds as I focused sunlight falling over the magnifying glass onto the paper.

I wondered what hell-like energy a series of parabolic troughs could offer. Assume that I adjust the trough rotation for optimal concentration, from dawn till evening. Okay! So, I wrote down a list of applications and what I need to calculate:


  • Melting a mixture of sodium nitrate and potassium nitrate

  • The objective here is to store this molten salt in some super-insulated storage tank. This can be readily available in the night to heat food and water. And, if its quantity allows, even generate electricity by steam-powered turbines.

    Here, I need to calculate how much salt can I melt in a day. So firstly I need to know WHICH quantities I must know in order to calculate this, and second HOW to calculate it (steps and formulae involved). (Please use sample values of your own choice and solve this scenario with them, as I have trouble understanding without examples)

  • Turning water in pipes at the focal point (more like focal lines in this case ) into high-pressure steam... to turn turbines or other rotary components

  • This will provide rotational force (I THINK the right term would be torque, but whatever) to 1) generate electricity (and perhaps use it to split H2O to hydrogen and oxygen ; hydrogen for stored energy ; oxygen as an oxidizing agent) 2) run millstones, pump water, raise masses (again, for stored energy), run fridge compressors directly (why waste energy by converting mechanical energy to electrical only to convert it back to mechanical ), etc.

    Here, I need to calculate how much turning force (torque ) the axle, that is turned by the steam in the pipes, will provide. Again, WHICH quantities do I need to know, and HOW to use them to calculate torque using formulae. (Please use sample values of your own choice and solve this scenario with them, as I have trouble understanding without examples)

    I believe the answers to this world's energy chaos is in the sun. After all, no sun = no heat = no bacterial activity on soil level = no nitrogen fixation = no plants = no animals = no humans. God bless you permies.com legends!
     
    Posts: 46
    Location: British Columbia, Canada
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    What about using parabolic lenses, to heat waste glass up enough until it's molten, then casting it into a parabolic lense? Self-replicating parabolic lenses?

    Not sure if you've seen this video on youtube...
     
    Danielle Lagrange
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    Dylan, the problems I am facing lie in physics calculations. I need someone to help me out with the math!
     
    pollinator
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    Location: Eilean a' Cheo
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    A lovely complex puzzle Danielle, not sure quite where it fits into Permaculture...
    Did you see Andasol power station on Wikipedia?  It gives some information on output, area and costs of a large salt storage energy generation facility. Which may give some idea of feasibility for you. I guess they get economies of scale.
     
    Danielle Lagrange
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    Oh my! Nancy, you got me gold here! I'll try to downsize the area (200 ha in this case) and see how many gigawatt-hours I can get... looks enormous at first.
    gift
     
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